Jennifer is a one in a million stay-at-home mom. (More like one OF a million stay at home moms!) She graduated from a liberal arts college but there is nothing liberal OR artsy about her. She is married to Kevin Fischer of This Just In, and together they have a beautiful young daughter Kyla Audrey. In no particular order she loves dogs, wine, a good bargain, her family, pizza, and entertaining. Follow her blog of all things miscellaneous including but not limited to cooking and baking, entertaining and party planning, being a mommy, and homekeeping.
You think you are the parent of a little angel, right? And you think that your little angel is surrounded by other cherubim, right? Then your daughter tells you on the way home from school that “Angie said I was mean and didn’t want to be her friend, but I do. I just wanted to be Kelly’s friend today too.” And you think it might be an isolated incident. Until you hear the same story with different names a few days later.
So you use these times as teaching moments, telling your lovely little one that “everyone is EVERYONE’S friend… no one gets left out do you understand?” And you pray that it remains this simple. And this is just K-4. And yes, I’m speaking from personal experience.
I think there is a fine line between “kids will be kids” and the concept of bullying. While it’s not nice to admit, there were times I can specifically recall being the rotten kid and causing a few tears myself. And I also know what it’s like to be so miserable day after day after day that you actually have physical symptoms preventing you from going to school. When no amount of intervention corrected my own situation I switched schools. And my life changed forever, SO much for the better.
Again I’ve been on both sides of the proverbial coin. I think it is important to recognize intentional cruel behavior among classmates. It needs to be stopped for many, obvious reasons. But we can’t turn our kids into insecure wimps who don’t stand up for themselves on the playground. After all when the real world comes knocking and their coworkers aren’t all peaches and cream, then what? Then we have more ridiculous examples of helicopter parents & millennials who don’t know how to function outside of a bubble.
As parents we do the best we can to raise kind, caring, empathetic offspring. Or so we hope. We think we’re successful until perhaps a note comes home or a phone call is placed making us aware (for the first time?) that this time our kid is causing the problem.
I’m not keen on psychobabble, especially when all it does is give a label and therefore an excuse to improper behavior. Once we found the term “road rage” it was a legitimate defense in the courtroom for shooting a fellow driver who may or may not have cut you off as you were trying to merge on the freeway. The Wall Street Journal’s article about “relational aggression” makes me wonder. Are we more aware of behaviors of youngsters these days? After all we’ve come a long way from the concept of “children should be seen and not heard.” On the other hand are we justifying behavior in our kids that a simple swift punishment wouldn’t change?
Read about it here. And feel free to weigh in by leaving a comment.